Tag: Twitter

This Twitter Guide Will Make You See What You’re Doing SO Wrong And How To Make It Right [FOR AUTHORS]

IF your goal is to spam your book links up there and hope for the best. Most writers write their book and then realize, oh hey, there are millions of potential readers just waiting to buy my book. I’m gonna tell them all about my book by repeatedly sharing my link with them! They’re all gonna buy my book and I’ll be rich!

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Stop trying to go viral

Norah Myers is a freelance publishing consultant for BookMachine. She is currently writing a business book for a marketing company, practising Pilates, and eating too much flourless chocolate cake (and it shows). Her Twitter and Instagram handles are the same: @bookish_norah.

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Using social media to find new clients

How to start?

You have a Twitter account, are active on Facebook, have a LinkedIn presence and a website, but you need these to work for you. We all face the difficult task of finding new clients, but marketing via social media can make selling your services online much easier. Social media can be a great way of backing up how you engage with prospective clients and lead to lively and informative conversations online, if you have a clear and positive online presence.

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3 ways to be excellent on social media

Whether you’re a publisher, indie author or editor, it’s likely that using social media will be part of your engagement strategy. Perhaps you want to connect with potential clients or build a network. Maybe you’re looking for content or even funding.

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Tips for how and when to use paid social media advertising

William Horsnell joined Jessica Kingsley Publishers in April 2016 and is the marketing executive responsible for their Education, Special Education, Early Years and Adoption and Fostering lists.  He takes a particular interest in digital marketing and finding new ways to make campaigns more innovative. Here, he discusses the use of paid social media advertising.

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How we got everyone on Twitter talking about our debut book #NastyWomen

You’re one of over 200,000 new titles being published in the UK this year.[1]

You’re a drop in an ocean of content, a grain of sand on a well-trodden beach of gems and, honestly, some flushed refuse. Where do you start on making a splash?

For us at alternative Edinburgh-based publisher 404 Ink, we knew Twitter was going to be our first and most reliable port of call to reach our audience. When co-founder Heather McDaid and I decided to commission and publish Nasty Women, an anthology of essays and accounts on what it is to be a woman in the 21st century as a direct pushback against the poisonous rhetoric and ‘alternative facts’ coming out of the Trump administration and Brexit discussions, social media was at the forefront of our marketing campaign.

Nasty Women is an important, timely collection and a call to arms to tell your stories and tell them loud: our genuine rallying cry and an irresistibly punchy hook made for character-limited marketing. The #NastyWomen hashtag was already buzzing so hopping on that was a no-brainer. However, we also knew that tweeting into the white noise of the heavily populated book world wasn’t going to be enough and we needed to be target-focused to make waves.

For better or worse we pride ourselves on our largely non-corporate looking Twitter account. @404Ink looks like what it is: two young women who enjoy using GIFs and being a bit sarcastic. It appeals to the demographic we publish for and hopefully comes across as genuine. To keep this message consistent we didn’t want to muddy our timeline with tweets at random celebrities who might have a vague interest in our book, we wanted to tweet with a clear purpose.

In the early days of our Nasty Women Kickstarter campaign, day three to be precise, our friend and publicity assistant Mairi tweeted from her personal account a message and link to the campaign at Margaret Atwood. No way she would bite, we thought. And yet, she backed it and spread the word, being supportive for the rest of the Kickstarter. Engaging with people of influence who we think will genuinely appreciate our book from a personal angle is what works for us. No one likes spam, and absolutely no one likes being one of ten randomly tagged in a generic crowdfunding campaign tweet. Keep it targeted, keep it personal and for the love of all things bookish don’t spam.

The kind of spam you do want is that from your audience. My Twitter timeline is effectively spammed with our own book because photographic tweets are number 1 on Twitter. The book is visually appealing and carries a timely message that is part of a larger political and social movement which we thought would do well on Twitter but Nasty Women has made waves beyond our expectations and hopes thanks to a perfect storm of planning, persistence and a tiny bit of luck.

Laura Jones is the co-founder of new and alternative publisher 404 Ink and a book production and promotion freelancer for the Saltire Society, Bloody Scotland and more. @laurafjones @404Ink

[1] https://www.publishers.org.uk/resources/uk-market/statistics-news/uk-book-industry-in-statistics-2015/


Social Media: Why lots of followers doesn’t necessarily mean success (and what you should look at instead)

I’ve worked with a range of brands and businesses on their social media presence. Twitter accounts I maintain usually gain around 1000 followers a month. While these followers are targeted and engaged with on the basis of them being potential customers, not all of them are as much as a fan as you’d hope. Followers alone are not the greatest indicator of social media success. You could have 100k Twitter followers, but if only 3 are actually interested in your business or product then they’re not a very valuable audience. In fact, I worked with a musician with a pretty big following (of real people) nearing the 50k mark. Despite this, he can’t sell his music or even get a great deal of plays on his music videos. His followers are more interested in the funny content and memes he posts than the songs he makes. While it is a large following, its value can certainly be questioned.

So, if followers alone aren’t a good indicator of social media success, what is?

I place a lot more weight on engagement. How interactive are your followers? How much do they care about what you’re posting? I once had a client that was insistent on gaining as many followers as possible, no matter what. It didn’t matter to them whether they spoke the language or were even real people, they just wanted to see that number rise. Begrudgingly, I did what they asked. A few days later, they complained they looked fake because despite all these followers we were still scraping for three retweets. I look back hoping they learnt their lesson. For those of you yet to cross that bridge, here are some other indicators you can look at to see whether your social media manager is doing a decent job:

1) Engagement Rate

Now that Twitter has built in analytics and you can see tweet activity stats from the mobile app, it’s very easy to see your engagement rate. If your tweet has 50,000 impressions and two people interacted with it, something isn’t right. However, if your tweets are getting loads of impressions and interaction but you still have a small following, then it’s likely that the following will grow slowly and steadily off of the back of that (and that tends to be the best kind of growth – both valuable and manageable).

To improve this, take a look at what kind of social media posts are getting the most engagement and find a way to work more of them into your social media schedule and remove any unnecessary posts that don’t do so well.

2) Retweets

Getting lots of retweets usually indicates that people (not just your followers) like the material you’re posting so much that they want to quickly share it. While retweets on your promotional content probably indicate higher levels of brand engagement than retweets on your non-promotional content, both are great as they put your brand in front of a whole new audience.

3) Shares

It’s pretty easy to retweet something, but having followers that go out of their way to actively share your website/products etc. on their profile signifies a much higher level of engagement. If you add your Twitter handle to the text that is tweeted when someone presses the share button, you’ll be notified of each share (using the button). You can then retweet these posts to your followers to say “Hey, this person loved our blog so much they shared it. You should probably check it out too.”

4) Replies

People taking time out of their day to interact with your posts is great, but clicking a button or pressing share on a web page isn’t too hard. Followers that consistently respond to your posts with feedback, questions, insight and general discussion tend to be some of your biggest fans. Reply to them and have a short and sweet conversation – they’ll be sure to be back for more!

5) Likes

Many people tend to think likes on Twitter are meaningless and, for the most part, I’d say they are. However, if someone likes your tweet it can mean a few good things. They may be saving it for later (likely to be the case if there’s a link in the tweet) or they liked the tweet too much not to interact at all, but not enough to retweet (in which case, you may need to figure out why that is). Also, people’s likes are stored, meaning in the future they (or someone else) could stumble across your post all over again!

Most of these statistics for your Twitter account can be found in the analytics tool Twitter provides. It’s free, so make sure you make use of it!

Aysh Banaysh is a freelance Social Media Manager for bands, brands and businesses. She’s also the editor of Eat More Cake and shares digital marketing advice and social media tips on her website.

Thanks to Norah Myers for sourcing this guest post.

social media

4 tips for growing your social media following

Social media is becoming one of the greatest assets you can use to grow your business. As a social media fiend, I’m particularly fond of using an online platform for recommending books to readers – I am here for great stories and even greater conversations about said stories.

If you’d like to grow your social media presence, here are some tips for doing so:

1) Figure out what you want to give to your audience

Are you going to be promoting your business? Promoting your personal life as a lifestyle blogger? Whatever way you use social media, know who you’re targeting and work with your audience. That’s not to say “give the people what they want!” but it’s more of an “if Instagram works because your product is better received visually, know that your audience is going to be more open to what you’re selling!”

2) Be authentic

I can’t stress this one enough. If you are passionate about what you’re putting out there, it will show and people tend to appreciate honesty and transparency.

3) Be creative

Come up with interesting ideas on how to use your social platforms – I’ve noticed that Twitter is for quick news, Instagram is for aesthetics, and Facebook is for lengthy news. Create content that you can use across all these platforms in unique ways.

4) Interact with your community members

It’s so important to not only have a voice in whatever online community you are joining, but to also listen to other voices in that community. Create conversation, make connections with others, and have fun doing it. Social media is meant to be social – in my case, I’m a book blogger who loves to talk about books, but I’m a reader first. I’m on the same level as all of the other readers who follow me – it’s important to remember that!

Natasha Minoso is a Penguin by day and a book blogger 24/7. She’s here to recommend you hot drinks and hotter reads. You can find her living on Instagram @bookbaristas.

Thanks to Norah Myers for sourcing this guest post.



Getting a book noticed: 4 tips from the UK’s bestselling indie author

Rachel Abbott self-published her first novel, Only the Innocent, in 2011 through Kindle Direct. It reached the number 1 spot in the Kindle store just over three months later,held its position for four weeks and was the second highest selling self-published title in 2012. In August 2015, Amazon confirmed that Rachel is the UK’s bestselling independent author over the last five years. She is also listed at number 14 in the list of bestselling authors – both traditionally and independently published – over the same five year period. Here are her top tips for promoting a title.

The one question I am always asked by writers is “How can I get my book noticed?”. As we all know, it is possible to write the most brilliant novel in the world but, unless people know it’s out there, how are they going to find it amongst the millions of books available for the Kindle?

The tips below might help you to be noticed and to build and maintain a high readership.

1) Run an awareness campaign

Don’t only think about marketing activities that result in immediate sales – focus on making sure that people recognise your books, seeing them in as many places as possible. Display your covers: at the end of each email you send; in guest posts for popular blogs; in tweets or Facebook posts. Awareness is crucial to success. When readers see your book in a store you want them to think ‘I’ve seen that book before – it looks interesting.’

2) Develop a list of reviewers

Most bloggers post their reviews on Amazon and Goodreads as well as on their own blogs. Keep a list of the reviewers you like, and make sure you invite them to read the book before launch. Find other reviewers by searching similar authors, plus the word ‘review’. Send reviewers all the details they might need including what the book is about, the word length and genre. Good reviews create a desire for people to buy.

3) Build your mailing list

A perfect example of a marketing plan objective would be to increase your mailing list by 500 readers. Your actions might include putting a link to a sign-up page in the back of your books, running a promotion, creating a newsletter sign-up form for the author Facebook page, blog or website. Then you can send readers regular updates on the book launches.

4) Use social media tools to help you

It’s all so easy to get hooked on Twitter and be on their all day – but use scheduling tools to cut down on the time spent on social media. Remember the average Twitter user reads tweets for no more than 15 minutes per day and follows 270 people, so if you want to catch their eye, you need to tweet at regular intervals.


How to build a community: Interview with Will Rycroft

Will Rycroft is Community Manager at VINTAGE, and speaker at our next event, ‘How to build a community‘, on the 18th May. VINTAGE books have over 80,000 Twitter followers and over 250,000 fans on Facebook, so it’s quite the community. Here Norah Myers interviews Will to learn more..

1) Why was it important to include a podcast as part of Vintage’s community?

Audio has been growing in importance for several years now and podcasts and audio books have never been so popular or easy to download. The intimacy of the listening experience means it’s a really effective way of communicating about our books. We knew that we had a range of writers and books that would allow us to create brilliant monthly podcasts involving interviews and readings but also stimulating content like cocktail making, food and location-specific recordings. All of this is to show the diversity of VINTAGE’s publishing and also our place as part of a wider cultural conversation.

2) How have you seen Vintage’s offline community – book launches, literary events – grow as a result of the online conversation?

Social media has allowed us to live-tweet events so that people could get an idea of how amazing they can be (this enhanced even further when they see tweets from other people there too). We’ve definitely seen our online community keen to meet us and each other offline and when we trialed a literary walk in London last year, with no idea if anyone would turn up, we were thrilled to see so many join us. We’ll be doing even more VINTAGE Walks this year.

3) Which social media platform has been the most effective for engaging conversation? Why?

Twitter, without a doubt. That’s how the platform is set up really and our approach on there is all about starting and participating in conversation. The fact you’re communicating in real-time, to multiple people but without a clogged feed, means it’s perfectly suited. We’re not there to sell books directly; we’re there to share our passion for them. Even things like the new polling feature can help stimulate conversation and engagement.

4) Why does using visual content in posts – GIFs and pictures – increase engagement?

People love to share things on social media so if you have a gorgeous picture of your books, or a scene to share, then your followers are more likely to share it to theirs. I love GIFs, mainly because they make me laugh and can communicate several things at the same time. They also allow you to reference films, music and popular culture whilst talking about your books. If you imagine someone scrolling through their feed, what posts do you think are going to stand out: text-only or those with a picture, GIF or video?

5) How should social media managers prepare themselves to use new apps and platforms?

Don’t rush in with your brand account. Download new apps and platforms and try them out personally first. Follow other accounts to see what they’re doing and keep an eye out to see what works and what doesn’t. Beware of spreading yourself too thin however. New apps and platforms seem to launch every week and very few of those that break through are attracting lots of users a few months down the line. We concentrate our energies on the main platforms whilst keeping an eye on those that might fit us in the future.

6) What is the best publishing-specific advice you could give to social media managers?

Keep it authentic. People can spot a phony (and will relish the opportunity to point it out!). When it comes to books, the readers you’re talking to will be passionate and fervent so you have to know your stuff – if you get something wrong they WILL tell you. But generally, as long as you’re communicating who you are, what you stand for and doing so with belief, you can’t be wrong. Unless you’re actually wrong of course.

Will Rycroft seeks to engage the reading community wherever they are with his passion for books. He commissions and creates digital content for VINTAGE’s social media channels and the new Penguin consumer website. You can follow his musings on Twitter, his vlog on YouTube and hear him interviewing authors and more on the VINTAGE Podcast.

grow traffic

5 tips for growing traffic and engagement for your content

Getting a new blog or social media platform noticed can be difficult. It is important that you are effective and systematic when you engage with the publishing community. Follow this step by step guide to get you closer to your target audience and increase traffic to, and engagement with, your content.

1) Follow big influences

Image credit: @demelzagriff95

Big names in the publishing world won’t necessarily follow you back but repeated, and meaningful, engagement with their content will eventually get you noticed. You need to get your name and brand out there for people to come to you. Start with @samatlounge, @jobsinbooks @publicitybooks and @SamEades.

2) Network

Finding like-minded bloggers is half the battle, but next you need to engage with them to form relationships. The beauty of the internet is that you can meet new people without even needing to attend industry events. Make sure you follow, like and comment on content written by similar bloggers on your platform. Engagement is what you want, so you need to reach others first. Why not offer to host a guest post to advertise their blog? Many bloggers are happy to reciprocate.

3) Don’t hashtag randomly

Hashtags are one of the best way for similar people to find your account. Whether you’re using Twitter or Instagram, make sure you are taking notice of the official and trending hashtags that the majority of people are using. Don’t exclude yourself from the conversation by simply using the a less popular ones. Both Twitter and Instagram have useful features to highlight the most commonly used hashtags. Instagram can even tell you exactly how many posts have used a certain hashtag.

4) Think outside the box

There are thousands of sub genres of book that your blog or social media platform may cover. Once you’ve followed big names in publishing and started networking with similar bloggers, it’s time to get specific. If you aren’t writing about YA, there isn’t always a well-established community to join. It’s time think creatively. Are you writing about politics? Follow journalists or relevant magazines. Writing about lifestyle books? Follow beauty, health and cookery accounts. Search Facebook for relevant groups and events.

5) Create your own community

If you are still struggling to engage in your online community, there is a chance that there isn’t an established community already online. Why not start your own? Creating a Facebook group or blogging hours on Twitter are a great way to bring like-minded people together.


demelza griffithsDemelza Griffiths is an English Literature finalist and social media enthusiast who can’t wait to escape the ivory towers of university to seek a career in book publicity. Her blog, Books feat. Politics covers the latest and greatest in political non-fiction and literary fiction. Find her on Twitter, Instagram and WordPress.

Feature Image Credit: mkhmarketing, CC License


The power of visual design: How to make your blog stand out

You’ve got a blog. You’ve got Twitter. You post regularly. But how do you stand out?

Almost everyone in publishing is sharing online content but, without a loyal following, posting blog articles and tweets can feel like shouting into the void.

Luckily, there is one majorly underappreciated weapon in your social media arsenal – visual design.

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Reading via Snapchat? Social media updates you need to know

Social media is always evolving, and that’s why I like it. If you don’t keep up with the latest updates, you’ll get mired in old ways that worked six months ago but have since bit the proverbial dust.

Here are recent changes from 5 of the big players.

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